Moss proves that a plant’s cultural value can be surprisingly arbitrary and detached from ecological merit.
Nobody seemed to understand my fascination with road verges as remarkably resilient ecosystems.
The otherness of Japanese gardens has something to do with the way they are tended.
The crammed grid of houses in the middle of Kyoto left no space for gardens. But there were plants – in pots.
Before our trip to Japan I had not expected urban streets to hold particular horticultural interest.
For the past seven years the magnolia has been our borrowed landscape, a generous gift from neighbours.
It is very quiet. Nothing moves. The precision of this highly fragile arrangement is breathtaking.
I had been fascinated – and mystified – by Japanese gardens for as long as I could remember.
All foliage looks like it has been meticulously painted with a very fine brush.
With the added intrigue of the unexpectedly tall meadow, my garden seemed otherworldly.
What exactly was happening during the first lockdown? People had started gardening.
I decided this grass mono-culture was where I would try to make a difference as a gardener.
“There must be some reason why we think a real flower is more positive than a plastic flower.”
In front of me was a meadow surrounded by old brick walls – in the middle of the city.
Their small outdoor space does not limit their passion for plants – on the contrary.